Digital Gabe
Cutting Edge Commentary On All Things Media

The EU Slams Google . . . Again

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Remember that time (last week) when Spotify complained to the EU about Apple’s “monopolistic” forced fee structure in its App Store?  As I noted in my post, the EU is more biased against big tech than the US courts would be, so Spotify is likely to have a sympathetic ear in this filing.

Turns out my hunch could be right.  In a different but similar case, yesterday the EU hit Google with a $1.7B fine for hindering competition in the digital space.  The violation was triggered by a clause in Google’s AdSense contract, which prohibits participants from placing ads on 3rd party websites.  In a nut shell, if you decide to participate in Google’s search platform through AdSense you can’t be on anyone else’s search platform.

Amazingly, this is the third time in less than a year that the EU has fined Google billions for monopolistic behavior.  The EU Commission ordered the company to pay $4.9B in July’18 for unfairly pushing its apps on smartphones.  Then they hit Google with a $2.7B fine for using its search engine to steer consumers to its own shopping platform.

All of this shows you just how aggressive the EU is getting when it comes to limiting power abuse by the tech titans.  You have to assume Apple is thinking about what’s happening to Google as it deals with Spotify’s App Store complaint.

 

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